Saurav Vishnu’s Tailing Pond puts the spotlight on the ill-effects of uranium mining in Jharkhand

Saurav Vishnu’sTailing Point chronicles the ill effects of uranium mining in Jamshedpur, Jharkhand

author_img Farah Khatoon Published :  19th November 2021 12:00 AM   |   Published :   |  19th November 2021 12:00 AM
Tailing Pond

A still from Tailing Pond

When the call for filmmaking dawned upon Saurav Vishnu, his ancestral village in Jamshedpur had to be his natural muse. The New York-based entrepreneur, armed with engineering and double MBA degrees, possesses a natural flair for filmmaking and his debut short, Tailing Pond, is among one of the contenders for nominations at the Academy Awards this year. The film traces the impact of uranium mining on the local tribal population at Jadugora in Jamshedpur. The 36-year-old, tells us, “Tailing Pond h a p p e n e d because of my late father. He was posted twice as the officer-in-charge of Jadugora police station and during his tenure there we got to witness the plight of the locals. So, when I decided to make my first film, my dad suggested telling the story of Jadugora.” The 24-minute-long film is narrated by Sex and the City star Cynthia Nixon and was screened at about 50 film festivals worldwide including Ontario International Film Festival in Canada, and Ayodhya Film Festival. It has received over 15 awards, winning Best Film at the New York Indian Film Festival and the Jaipur International Film Festival, and two awards at the Calcutta International Cult Film Festival. Excerpts from a tête-a-têtewith Saurav who is currently working on the six-part sequel to Tailing Pond.

What was the inspiration behind Tailing Pond?

Although, I am based in New York for the past 18 years, my heart belongs to Jadugora, which is 35 kms away from Jamshedpur. I made this film to raise awareness about radioactive waste and contamination in that area, hoping to bring about immediate social change and justice for the town’s tribal population. Tailing Pond traces the impact of uranium mining on the local tribal population at Jadugora in Jharkhand. Thousands of young children are falling ill and dying untimely deaths due to radioactive waste pollution. I consider this film a way of giving back to my birthplace and society, with 100 per cent of the film’s earnings being donated to a not-for-profit organisation working for the community.

What’s next after Tailing Pond?

I am currently the writer, producer and director of a crime drama titled One and I am also producing a horror film, The New Me, which is still in its production stage.